Though vision problems are fairly common, they are often misdiagnosed. This can lead to a delay in treatment and cause unnecessary anxiety for the patient. There are a few reasons why vision problems are misdiagnosed. Read on to learn what these reasons are and how to help receive an accurate diagnosis.
Vision Problems Go Undetected
Many people often do not realize that they have a problem with their vision until it begins to affect their daily life. For instance, someone with early-stage macular degeneration may not notice any changes in their vision until they start having difficulty reading or driving.
Different Types of Eye Conditions Can Have Similar Symptoms
Another reason why vision problems are often misdiagnosed is that symptoms can be subtle and easily attributed to other causes. For example, fatigue and headaches are common symptoms of dry eye syndrome, but they can also be caused by stress or other health conditions. As a result, someone with dry eye syndrome may not seek treatment until their symptoms become more severe.
Eye Conditions Can Develop Gradually, Making Early Symptoms Easy to Miss
Many eye conditions develop gradually, making early symptoms easy to miss. However, there are some common warning signs that can indicate a problem. If you experience any of the following, it’s important to see an eye doctor right away:
- Blurry vision
- Difficulty seeing at night or in low light
- Eye pain or discomfort
- Redness or swelling of the eyes
- Sensitivity to light
- Seeing flashes of light or floaters in your field of vision
If you have any concerns about your eyesight, don’t hesitate to contact an eye care professional. With early diagnosis and treatment, many eye problems can be successfully managed.
Some Eye Conditions Are Rare, So Doctors May Not Be Familiar with Them
There are several rare eye conditions that can cause vision problems. Because these conditions are so rare, doctors may not be familiar with them. This can make diagnosis and treatment difficult.
Patients May Not Report All of Their Symptoms to Their Doctor
Patients may not report all their eye symptoms to their doctor, leading to misdiagnosis. Common symptoms like dry eyes and redness can be easily dismissed as minor and unimportant when they could be indicative of a more serious condition. If you experience any new or worsening eye symptoms, be sure to mention them to your doctor right away.
Eye Exams Aren’t Frequent Enough
Sometimes people are reluctant to visit the eye doctor because they are afraid of what they might find. However, it is important to remember that early detection and treatment of vision problems can prevent them from becoming worse and causing permanent damage.
Steps to a Proper Diagnosis When Visiting the Eye Doctor
It is important to get a proper eye diagnosis when visiting the eye doctor. There are several things that you can do to make sure that you get an accurate diagnosis:
- Be honest with your eye doctor about your symptoms. If you are not honest, then the doctor will not be able to properly diagnose your condition.
- Have a list of questions ready before you visit the eye doctor. This will help the doctor to better understand your condition and give you the best possible treatment.
- Follow all the instructions that the eye doctor gives you. This includes taking all the prescribed medications and using all the recommended treatments.
- Keep a journal of your symptoms. This will help the doctor to track your progress and make sure that you are getting the best possible care.
- Be patient when waiting for an appointment with the eye doctor. It can take several weeks or even months to get an accurate diagnosis.
- Follow up with your eye doctor after your visit. This will ensure that you are getting the best possible care and that your condition is being properly monitored.
Arvada Vision & Eye Clinic is a full-service eye care facility that has been providing high-quality vision and eye care services to the Denver metro area for over 50 years. We offer comprehensive eye exams, contact lens fittings, treatment of ocular disease, and management of ocular emergencies. Our experienced team of optometrists and ophthalmologists provide each patient with individualized care and the latest in advances in vision care. Schedule an appointment today!